Thursday, September 30, 2010

Out and About in Budapest

CC bundled up... its definitely fall here in Budapest!
Heroes' Square
Millennium Monument
built in 1896 to celebrate Hungary's 1,000th birthday
Szepmuveszeti Museum
(Museum of Fine Arts)
(Hall of Art)
CC was impressed
Heroe's Square is the gateway to City Park...
which has a huge duck pond!
This made someone very happy.
Thank goodness they have ducks in Hungary!
Eventually all the duck mania got to Bop.
She fell asleep on the ride back to the apartment.
She's now napping.
Today we ventured out to City Park, which is Budapest's version of Central Park. It's a giant park in the middle of the city. Heroe's Square is the gateway to the park and its at the end of Andrassy ut. Our apartment is on the corner of Andrassy and Izabel, so it's right down the street. Heroe's Square has a beautiful monument built to commemorate the city's 1,000th birthday and has several great museums flanking the square. We made it just a little ways into the park, where we saw the duck ponds, but I guess all the excitement proved too much. My little Budapest baby pooped out in the stroller. I wheeled her back home and she's now taking a glorious little nap. We're going to go get my SIM card and GPS this afternoon and then I plan to go back to the park. The park also hosts a zoo, circus, castle and something called "Parade Street". Sounds like fun!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Russell's Birthday & Budapest

Happy birthday, Rusty!
Claudia helps Daddy blow out candles & make a wish.
Sorry, Bop. Not your best angle, but a funny pic none the less.
Claudia's first flight went great.
She's watching Olivia on DVD in this pic, right before takeoff.
Too busy to pose for a picture.

We have safely arrived in Budapest! Before we left we celebrated Russell's birthday at Gram & Grandpa's. Today is Russell's birthday and he is working away. Happy birthday, Russell!! The flight over went smoothly for the most part. We momentarily lost our stroller at the layover stop in Germany, but it arrived in Budapest the next day. Claudia did excellent on the flight. She only cried a little bit during the first takeoff from Houston. She had never flown before, so we were pretty worried about taking her overseas. She ended up sleeping the entire way over, so it couldn't have gone any better.
So far we are set up in our interim living quarters in the city. I miss our house and Houston, but am enjoying house hunting in Hungary. We saw three houses this morning and will see about five more this afternoon after Claudia's nap. I really liked the first house, so we'll have to see about the next ones. Everything is going great so far. Keep you posted on which house we pick & I'll post some pics too!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Moving Day Has Arrived!

Claudia's classmates at Creme made her this sweet shirt.
They all left their mark and "signature" on the shirt.
Pretty cute and very thoughtful.
Happy baby. Tired mommy.

It's about two o'clock a.m. Russell and Claudia are snoozing and I'm typing away. I wanted to mark the last night in our house this way. After we put Claudia down, Russell and I got busy marking everything in our house as "sea freight" or "storage" and also packed our immediate necessities for the flight and all our clothes for air shipment. Now that its done, I should be passed out. Unfortunately, the four cups of coffee I downed are hindering the whole sleep thing.

Knowing that tonight is the last night in our house makes me sad, but happy that we had such a special "first home." Our house is a little carriage house cottage in the Heights and it has been a very happy home for us. Today another young couple made an offer on it. We countered, then they countered and eventually we struck a deal. I hope everything works out. It was somewhat of a relief to get this taken care of before we go. We'll let our relocation company handle it from here.
I miss our little house and it is so special to us, but I can't wait to see where we are headed next. Budapest or bust!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I Should Have Asked

Mom to Claudia: so, Claudia...
Mom to Claudia: ... it seems you can drink from an open cup.
Claudia to Mom: Yes, I've been doing this for months.
Claudia to Mom: Silly, Mommy.

I walked into the snack room at Creme today to witness Claudia drinking from an open cup and using a spork - very handily for that matter. I knew my baby could fling yogurt on the walls, but didn't realize she could adeptly maneuver utensils from plate to mouth. And the cup! I have been giving her sippie cups or gingerly holding open cups to her mouth. Apparently I have been laboring under the delusion that my toddler is still a helpless baby. When I asked if these were recent developments, they said "[n]ot really, she's been doing this for about three months." What?! For all you moms that have their babies in daycare, ask your caregivers what your kids can do... you may be surprised!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Screwball: Claudia's First Ice Cream Man Purchase

waiting for ice cream, drool running down chin
Gram arrives... happy day!
reading with Gram
ok, ice cream time!
very curious
her selection? the Two-Ball Screwball. Good choice.
Mmmm... good.

Technically, it will be fall in about a week or two. In Houston, however, summer pretty much extends into November. Hence, business is still booming for the local ice cream men. On Saturday, Gram and I spent the day conducting a required top to bottom inventory of the contents of the house. Claudia helped. It was tedious and I now have the desire to live much more simply. Luckily, a trip from the ice cream man broke up the monotony of the day! Here are some pictures of Claudia enjoying her first ice cream from our local ice cream man. She selected the Two Ball Screwball, which is a pink sherbert ice cream with two little balls of bubble gum, all in a little cup. She loved it! However, the word "screwball" has now been added to her vocabulary. So now, if you hear her saying "skewba! skewba!" you know its ice cream she speaks of.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Playing at Gram and Grandpas & Visit from Uncle Hank

she prefers to push rather than ride.
Bop's working so hard pushing her stroller. tending to the plants
inspecting marigolds
here, Grandpa, this marigold smells great!
running around the yard
sleepy Bop with Uncle Hank and Mom
here's a preview of Claudia's halloween costume.
Although they don't celebrate Halloween in Budapest, we'll figure something out!
This bug needs candy!

Yesterday we went over to Gram and Grandpa's house to go visit Uncle Hank who came in from Louisiana on business. We had fun playing in their front yard and running up and down their street. We are enjoying these last days of summer. Claudia even tested out her new stroller. It's built for speed. She prefers to push the stroller though, riding, not so much.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day Play

she rises early...
... "stuff" (blankie + Oatmeal) in hand.
Reading Llama Llama Red Pajama
Engrossed in the story, Claudia will not look up from the book.
playdates over! Audrey is reh to gah.

I've been hard at work preparing our house to be listed. I have to say it looks great. I've decided not to move and stay here it looks so great. Just teasing. I just hope it sells! The real estate photographer is coming to tomorrow to take photos. I may tag along and take some pics too so I can memorialize the McLendons' first home. I'm going to miss it. We took a break from cleaning to play away the afternoon with Audrey and Jessie. As always, we had a blast. Claudia has discovered a new book - Llama Llama Red Pajama, from the Llama Llama series. She asks for it by name. Yama Yama. It was a going away present from her little boyfriend, Jay. I must find more of the these Yama Yama books.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Game Time!

Here's some chapstick, Aunt Debbie. Your lips look dry.
Clap your hands! It's game time!
Nevermind about the games, it's pillow toss time!
That was fun!
Do it again!!
Look! I found another tiger down the street from us!

With Russell being away, the fact that college football was starting completely escaped me. We usually have Mike & Mike on in the morning and PTI on in the evenings, so I'm typically aware of what's going on in the wide world of sports . But yesterday, when Aunt Debbie and Matthew invited us over for "the game", I had to think a second. Oh, yes, the LSU game. College football time. Wow, that came fast. I guess with that and tomorrow being Labor Day, summer is officially over. And that's fine with me! I welcome fall! The game had all the makings of a good one. Two forced turnovers within the first few minutes... a touchdown off a kickoff return, etc., etc. Who would have known the 4th quarter would be such a bust. But... a W is a W! Go tigers! Also, go Bulldogs! La Tech stomped Grambling. I'd say it was a good day in Louisiana, but not so much for the Grambling Tigers. Oh well, such is life. Claudia had more fun playing "pillow toss" on Aunt Debbie's bed than watching any of these games. Her new favorite activity is applying chapstick to everyone's lips. She's so considerate. =)

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